Tuesday, 23 August 2011

A year of Art Matters


Flowers in a bucket - oil on canvas Carol Lee Beckx © 2011
It’s almost a year since I started writing Art Matters with the first post - A new beginning. During the time I was packing up my life in South Africa in preparation for my move here to Brisbane, putting pen to paper (or fingers to the keyboard) helped me express myself when there were times that I couldn’t paint.

It’s been an eventful year. I de-cluttered and sorted and bid farewell to family and friends. In December I started life in a new country and new city. I shared the traumatic effect on Queensland of the January floods followed later by the devastation of Cyclone Yasi.

Gradually life returned to normal. I found my way around the city and made new friends.  I love having wonderful art galleries in the city to visit. Moving into my own home a couple of months ago reunited me with my belongings and I was able to start teaching. I love the interaction with those in my art groups and it’s rewarding to see their progress after just a few short weeks.
When I began blogging I had no idea who would be interested in reading my musings about art and life. At first I knew so little I wasn’t aware how to access the blog’s statistics! It’s therefore quite gratifying to see that I have readers from a number of different places across the world from Russia to Ecuador, USA, Germany, South Africa and Australia. My thanks to everyone who has stopped by, your interest is much appreciated.
While designing my website I discovered some wonderful artist’s blogs. I have learnt so much from looking at other artist’s paintings and seeing how they approach their art practice. There is a raft of painters doing a Daily Painting and posting every day without fail. Regular readers might remember I tried that back in January – this was a flash in the pan and then life got in the way. It was really difficult if not impossible for me to paint something worthwhile, photograph or scan it and post every single day. I have great admiration for those who manage this while maintaining a high standard.
An artist who succeeds is Julian Merrow-Smith - Postcard form Provence. He has been doing an average of five paintings a week since 2005. Each morning I enjoy the fresh delight of a new painting in my inbox.
Another blog that is well written and entertaining is Life and art – working through the absurdity of life. Gillian Holding is both an accomplished artist and writer. She also posts a daily digital self-portrait in  A Daily self- reflection - showing both talent and staying power.
Liz Steel is does the most wonderful sketches and her travel notebooks are an inspiration - her blog is Liz and Borromini.Katherine Tyrrell's Making a Mark , one of the top art blogs is a must read for artists.
 
There have been a number of artists who have confessed lately that daily posting is intrusive and disruptive to their development as an artist. This happens when the deadline becomes insistent and there’s no time for reflection, planning and self-assessment as an artist. The other problems with daily painting and blogging is that unless one is extremely imaginative the work will become repetitive and of indifferent quality.
The more I paint the less time I have to write. My solution is to write and post only when I have something to say. Unfortunately the intermittant nature of posting means that readers may forget you.

So please don’t forget the solution - sign up for an email subscription and you will know when there is a new post - and please do leave a comment every now and again - bloggers love to get feedback from their readers.
Now – I’m off to do a little more painting…